Washington, Simon P. and Randall L. Guensler (1993) Maybe We Can Build Our Way Out: Rethinking Infrastructure Solutions to Address Current Transportation Problems. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Presentation Series UCD-ITS-RP-93-14
California, which has been growing faster than other U.S. states for decades, is experiencing the effects of overcrowding on urban and suburban highways. This situation has lead to serious congestion, mobility, energy dependence, and air quality problems. These externalities of overcrowding, as well as the resulting inefficient use of land resulting from urban sprawl, create opportunity for social response. The regulatory pressure has been to clean up the air, while political pressure has been to reduce congestion. To address these pressures, economists and hard engineers alike have chanted their mantras supporting their unique solutions. Rarely do we see proposals composed of an array of ideas, with the intent to address simultaneously many of the current transportation problems. This paper first summarizes major transportation problems in the U.S. Then, the paper introduces an infrastructure development plan that incorporates pricing strategies, intelligent vehicle and highway systems (IVHS), and electric vehicle technologies. This plan, dubbed PIE (for pricing, IVHS, and electric vehicles), is just one way in which some of the many promising solutions can be combined to address current transportation dilemmas. It is shown why PIE could be more effective than stand-alone solutions, and why multifaceted solutions like PIE should be further analyzed.